Guts, Glory, Ram, Diesel

Gary S. Vasilash

For a variety of reasons—perhaps mainly predicated on protecting their heavy-duty pickup sales—OEMs have been loath to offer diesels for their big selling light duty pickup trucks.

No more.

2014 Ram 1500

The 2014 Ram is going to be available with a 3.0-liter diesel. The engine is a turbocharged, 60-degree, DOHC V6 that produces 240 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque.

While Chrysler’s Ram brand hasn’t released fuel economy figures for the engine—which is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, standard—the company does say that it is “noticeably more efficient than all V6 gasoline engines in the half-ton category.”

Presumably that means the Ford EcoBoost in the F150, which delivers 22 mpg highway in the 2WD truck and the new EcoTec3 V6 in the 2014 Chevy Silverado 2WD, which delivers 24 mpg highway.

2014 Ram 1500

And that eight-speed transmission is the only one offered in the half-ton class, Ram personnel point out with satisfaction.

The engine, which is also being used in the Jeep Grand Cherokee, is being sourced from VM Motori. Half of that company is owned by General Motors. The other half. . .Fiat. It has a diesel oxidization catalyst, diesel particulate filter, and selective catalytic reduction system (just add urea), so that it is 50-state emissions compliant.

2014 Ram 1500

Now that Ram has bucked the trend, what will the Other Two do?